Here are some comments from a recent email from Gino Blefari, CEO of Intero Real Estate Services:
Real Estate Is This Summer’s Biggest Blockbuster for Buyers
Summer is almost here – typically a busy season for home sales. But, what about this year? Will high gas prices and the rising cost of just about everything else from inflation dampen a typically active time of year in real estate? We’re on shaky ground, but could there be a better market for buyers? I don’t think so.
- Home prices fell to 9-year low
- Pending home sales took a pretty steep dive in April.
- Sales of new homes increased in April, for the second straight month
- Inventory of previously owned homes remains high.
There are a ton of factors that can affect home sales – employment numbers, gas prices, the cost of goods and services, overall confidence in the economy, loan standards, interest rates. And also, there’s the local factor – meaning one market may be sailing along, while another is floundering. For example, in Santa Clara County home prices haven’t dropped as drastically as the rest of the nation, they are actually higher than the Dot-Com crash days of 2002. Santa Clara County’s home prices today are more similar to pricing in 2004, averaging at $684,000. So remember real estate is local and depending on your location sales could pick up as more buyers realize conditions can’t get much better.
Buyers this summer have the best of all worlds: Low interest rates literally shave thousands of dollars off the price of a home; high inventory levels offer a shopper’s paradise in terms of choice; inventory also puts downward pressure on prices; prices are at a new recession low; and nothing major has changed “yet” in lending regulations that would cause major issues.
Calling all home shoppers: This summer is the season of your real estate dreams. The fences are buckling under your weight, and the grass is much greener on the ownership side if you’re ready. Not all homes are going at fire sale prices, of course, but for buyers in most parts of the country it really doesn’t get any better than this.
I am a native Californian born in Los Angeles and have resided in San Benito County since January 30, 1959. I attended the University of Southern California. I am a licensed Real Estate Broker, license #00409787, active for almost 45 years.
I started my career in 1972 and still am totally committed to the highest level of service to my clients. I am currently associated with Intero Real Estate Services.
I am Past President of the San Benito Association of Realtors, serving in the role on numerous occasions. I was a Director of the California Association of Realtors for over 18 years, having served on numerous committees. I also served 2 terms representing the California Association of Realtors at the National level, NAR. I am a certified SRES (Senior Real Estate specialist), since 2005.
My community involvement has included membership in the Hollister Rotary Club, serving as their first woman President in 2002. In the late 1960's, I became a member of the El Torillo Chapter of Children's Home Society, and served as President, and was also President of the Tri-County Council of CHS, which is today Kinship Center, and I am currently a Senior Active. I am a member of the San Benito Chamber of Commerce. From 2002-2008, I served on the Board of the Hollister Downtown Association and was their President from 2006-2007, and still serve on sub-committees of this organization. And, I am currently serving my 3rd term on the Community Foundation.
My record of performance and my reputation have made me who I am in the industry. I am a household name in San Benito County, when you think of Real Estate. My name is recognized not only in Hollister, but in our neighboring counties, Monterey, Santa Cruz and Santa Clara counties.
I have been involved in land development, marketed several subdivisions, sold ranches, commercial leasing, bank-owned properties, short sales and own a Property Management Company, Hollister Rental Properties, for more than 35 years. I am proud of my sales record and for the majority of my career I have been in the top 1% of major Real Estate Companies including Van Vleck Realtors, Cornish and Carey, Contempo, Seville-Contempo, Century 21, Coldwell Banker and finally Intero Real Estate services for the last 15 years.
Using my skills in negotiating, mediation and transaction closure, during 2010 and 2011, I was involved with the City of Hollister's First Time Home Buyer Down Payment Assistance Program. The program was the City's Redevelopment Agency, under Bill Avera, with the assistance of CJ Valenzuela who was working with the County of San Benito. CHISPA, a non-profit, was responsible for restoring homes to equal to new condition that the City had taken back in foreclosure, or that they had acquired. When the homes were restored, we put them on the Multiple Listing Service and we went out and promoted the City's Down Payment Assistance Program. Buyers were screened and qualified by our preferred lenders. I facilitated workshops for First Time Buyers explaining the programs. I negotiated the contracts for the City of Hollister and with the Buyers. With this program, I closed 2 homes in 2010, and 4 homes in 2011.
On a personal note, I am married to Richard Ferreira, a retired General Contractor/Developer. We have a combined family of six daughters, six grandsons and 3 granddaughters. We share commons interests in travel, movies, entertaining, and Richard has picked up my love of cooking. Our spare time is spent with family and enjoying our grandchildren.